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Set in concrete

Helicopter airlift aids repairs to Lower Harbor light

July 11, 2013
KYLE WHITNEY - Journal Staff Writer (kwhitney@miningjournal.net) , The Mining Journal

MARQUETTE - A helicopter worked along the Lake Superior shore this morning, assisting in the completion of some concrete work for the U.S. Coast Guard.

Workers used the chopper to carry a bucket of concrete from shore to the nearby Coast Guard light.

Executive Petty Officer Marcus Collison at Coast Guard Station Marquette said the unusual sight was a part of a restoration effort related to the light's support structure.

Article Photos

A helicopter flies along the Lake Superior shore in Marquette this morning, as crews assist in repairing the concrete base of the U.S. Coast Guard light. Workers poured concrete into large buckets, which were then flown out to the light. (Journal photo by Adelle Whitefoot)

"Basically, the concrete base that the light sits on - over time with the wind and (elements) - has just started to deteriorate," he said.

The work, according to Collison, was orchestrated by the Coast Guard Civil Engineering Unit out of Cleveland. That CEU serves all Coast Guard units in the Great Lakes region.

Collison said it's not extremely common to see a helicopter assisting in concrete work, but added the terrain in question provided few options.

"For the situation that we've got there - not having any sort of road access out there - we'd have to barge concrete trucks or use a helicopter," he said.

Locally, the Coast Guard was charged with ensuring public safety.

"Our job is to provide a safety zone around the light to ensure no boaters are in harm's way," Collison said Tuesday, before heading to a meeting to plan the specifics for today's work.

Kyle Whitney can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 250.

 
 

 

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